Pulling out a ticket for the bus or streetcar at the last minute - only those who know how to do it have a clear advantage. Unless you are standing in front of a ticket vending machine, which Höft & Wessel and Synapticon have virtually reinvented in cooperation with BUSSE. Here, buying tickets is child's play for everyone.
All too often, ticket machines on public transportation leave people perplexed and in despair. The operation is too confusing, too many steps to the desired ticket. Höft & Wessel, as a manufacturer of such devices, therefore wanted to make the impossible possible: The complete development of a new ticket vending machine system for local transport tickets, at which younger and older people find their way around just as easily as tourists, occasional and frequent travelers. In addition, the front-end and back-end of the software had to be as easy as possible to adapt to the individual requirements and appearance of a public transport company. Synapticon was chosen as one of the partners for the development and realization of this project in teamwork. For the user interface implementation, Synapticon enlisted the support of BUSSE specialists.
Usable, but not user-friendly - that was the verdict on the previous devices. The new system had to be faster and easier to use for every user.
Höft & Wessel, Synapticon and BUSSE always had all user groups in mind when developing the menu structure, user interface design and animation concept of the new vending machine. Synapticon's software specialists were responsible for the technical implementation.
The developed system is widget-based. Five different search masks (single-field search, start-destination search, POI, map, tickets) offer the individual requirements of the different users (professional, occasional user, youngster, pensioner and tourist) different ways of entering the user interface to purchase a ticket. A new feature here is the single-field search mask, which allows users to enter an address, stop or ticket type, similar to Google. The point-of-interest search mask also offers supporting search functions for tourists of a city to reach the hotspots with suitable tickets.
It was important during development that the search paths and steps be shortened and simplified. The joint team of experts agreed that different users with different skills also have different requirements. The ticket search screen, for example, offers the possibility to purchase a ticket within two clicks, perfect for all frequent travelers! Even more convenience is provided by a shopping cart, which allows multiple tickets to be purchased in one payment process.
In the final practical test in a field test studio, 50 test persons from all user groups gave the new ticket vending machine a very positive rating. They found the novel design a surprise. The older test persons also praised the ease of operation.
Höft & Wessel, based in Hanover and Swindon near London, was founded in 1978 by two students as a start-up company, focusing on the trend at the time of mobile data collection. Today, in addition to mobile solutions, the company develops, manufactures and sells ticket vending machines for regional and national transport companies as well as parking ticket vending machines worldwide.
Synapticon is a young company in the field of embedded systems based in the Stuttgart area. The company focuses on hardware and software for networked systems with intensive use of sensors and actuators. Customers benefit from the company's interdisciplinary expertise through flexible products as well as individual solutions in the fields of robotics, autonomous vehicles, industrial automation, special purpose machines and the Internet of Things.